Tuesday, June 21, 2011

The time of my line

iMindMap tool from ThinkBuzan is a great opportunity offered to mind mappers (or future ones). I'm not just saying that because I'm a licensed instructor but because it's really possible to create mind maps that you will never produce with any other computer application. Indeed, this time I would like to show you how you can draw cool timelines and what to do to remember their content.
Believe me, the iMindMap tool from ThinkBuzan is a great opportunity offered to mind mappers (or future ones). I'm not just saying that because I'm a licensed instructor but because it's really possible to create mind maps that you will never produce with any other computer application. Indeed, this time I would like to show you how you can draw cool timelines and what to do to remember their content.

Imagine that you would like to remember the history of the successive FIFA world cups (soccer/football), where it happened, which team won, who was the best player. Browsing here and there on the internet, it's quite easy to collect this information. Let's consider that we have it and therefore we can build this common mind map realised with a typical mind map application available on the market:

FIFA World Cup history - neutral mind map

If the only purpose of the mind map is to deliver knowledge about the subject (which is the case for the majority of computer based mind maps), the goal is achieved. Now, how much difficult would it be to actually acquire the knowledge it contains and remember it forever? You could say that it depends on how much energy you are prepared to spend in the learning process. But you might be very disappointed if you are tested a couple of days later and suddenly all your knowledge has gone. In fact, nothing has been done in this mind map to facilitate remembering. Branches are all very similar, texts are all the same size, colours are poorly used, cliparts are all the same and therefore misleading, ... Moreover, the chronological order of events as expressed (around the clock) might not necessarily be obvious to remember for everybody.

Let's look at the mind map I imagined for you. First I invented a new type of layout for drawing timelines. It consists of using branches for events which are put along a line instead of radiating around the central idea. Later in this post, I will explain how you can create your own timeline with iMindMap 5. Second and most important, I applied several practices for better use of your "right brain" and creative thinking. You will find on the new mind map, more curves, better images, all different, more colours, different font types, formats and sizes. Here is my proposal:


FIFA World Cup history - Creative mind map

You can now do the same exercise which will help to remember the history described. By associating words with unique spatial elements of different nature, you brain will store the knowledge in such a way that the recall become easier. Indeed, in order to remember each key piece of information listed in the mind map, you can try to re-create the map in your imagination, remembering the flow, the shapes, the images, the colours used, the font layouts and finally the associated word. Because the associations are stronger here compared to the first version, there is a greater chance that you will remember the content this time, not just after a couple of hours or days but even longer. Mind map can help you to increase your knowledge and appear more cultivated in front of others. It has a price, it's call creativity.

How to build a timeline with iMindMap 5
    1. Draw the line
      • Insert a central idea best representing the topic for which you want to list and detail the key dates;
      • Insert a branch (horizontally in my case but could be any curve) that represents your timeline;
      • Add a secondary branch (small one) on which you place the arrow and conventions (“t” in my example). An easy way to achieve that step is to select the branch and insert a sketch (Sketch tool);


    2. Draw branches
      • Draw a first branch. Place the end point at the final distance from the time line;
      • Add 3 control points (hold Shift key and click the mouse) as shown on the figure below;
      • Move all the points except the last two in such a way that your branch is aligned with the timeline (imagine it should be hidden);
      • Copy the newly created branch. Select the central idea and paste as many branch as you need for dates on your timeline;
      • Adjust the position of each pasted branch (end point) to become your future dates on the timeline ;




    3. Adjust layout
      • In order to get your timeline back on top of all the other added branches you must remove it and add it again. Select the timeline and cut it. Select the central idea and paste the timeline; Adjust its location and colour to set it back to the initial shape and position;
      • Eventually move some of the control points on the different branches to make all of them completely disappear behind the timeline
    4. Add content
      • Fill-in your timeline with the different dates and events;
      • Expand each branch with sub-branches according to your needs.


    This last mind map is of course an example of what you can obtain quickly as a timeline. Do not forget that you must put much more creative elements in your drawing if you want the content to be assimilated.

    The mind map also benefits from a fantastic presentation mode. This time I recorded for you the 3D mode. Have a look how great is the step by step display of the content of your map, at your speed. The perfect support for a great effect on the audience. Enjoy!


    For those who are interested by the iMindMap file, it is uploaded on the Biggerplate platform and accessible on http://www.biggerplate.com/mindmaps/kAK5GD25/philippe-packu-world-cup-history-or-how-to-build-a-timeline-with-imindmap-5

    iMindMap tool from ThinkBuzan is a great opportunity offered to mind mappers (or future ones). I'm not just saying that because I'm a licensed instructor but because it's really possible to create mind maps that you will never produce with any other computer application. Indeed, this time I would like to show you how you can draw cool timelines and what to do to remember their content.
    Believe me, the iMindMap tool from ThinkBuzan is a great opportunity offered to mind mappers (or future ones). I'm not just saying that because I'm a licensed instructor but because it's really possible to create mind maps that you will never produce with any other computer application. Indeed, this time I would like to show you how you can draw cool timelines and what to do to remember their content.

    Imagine that you would like to remember the history of the successive FIFA world cups (soccer/football), where it happened, which team won, who was the best player. Browsing here and there on the internet, it's quite easy to collect this information. Let's consider that we have it and therefore we can build this common mind map realised with a typical mind map application available on the market:
    
    FIFA World Cup history - neutral mind map
    
    If the only purpose of the mind map is to deliver knowledge about the subject (which is the case for the majority of computer based mind maps), the goal is achieved. Now, how much difficult would it be to actually acquire the knowledge it contains and remember it forever? You could say that it depends on how much energy you are prepared to spend in the learning process. But you might be very disappointed if you are tested a couple of days later and suddenly all your knowledge has gone. In fact, nothing has been done in this mind map to facilitate remembering. Branches are all very similar, texts are all the same size, colours are poorly used, cliparts are all the same and therefore misleading, ... Moreover, the chronological order of events as expressed (around the clock) might not necessarily be obvious to remember for everybody.

    Let's look at the mind map I imagined for you. First I invented a new type of layout for drawing timelines. It consists of using branches for events which are put along a line instead of radiating around the central idea. Later in this post, I will explain how you can create your own timeline with iMindMap 5. Second and most important, I applied several practices for better use of your "right brain" and creative thinking. You will find on the new mind map, more curves, better images, all different, more colours, different font types, formats and sizes. Here is my proposal:

    
    FIFA World Cup history - Creative mind map
    
    You can now do the same exercise which will help to remember the history described. By associating words with unique spatial elements of different nature, you brain will store the knowledge in such a way that the recall become easier. Indeed, in order to remember each key piece of information listed in the mind map, you can try to re-create the map in your imagination, remembering the flow, the shapes, the images, the colours used, the font layouts and finally the associated word. Because the associations are stronger here compared to the first version, there is a greater chance that you will remember the content this time, not just after a couple of hours or days but even longer. Mind map can help you to increase your knowledge and appear more cultivated in front of others. It has a price, it's call creativity.

    How to build a timeline with iMindMap 5
      1. Draw the line
        • Insert a central idea best representing the topic for which you want to list and detail the key dates;
        • Insert a branch (horizontally in my case but could be any curve) that represents your timeline;
        • Add a secondary branch (small one) on which you place the arrow and conventions (“t” in my example). An easy way to achieve that step is to select the branch and insert a sketch (Sketch tool);


      2. Draw branches
        • Draw a first branch. Place the end point at the final distance from the time line;
        • Add 3 control points (hold Shift key and click the mouse) as shown on the figure below;
        • Move all the points except the last two in such a way that your branch is aligned with the timeline (imagine it should be hidden);
        • Copy the newly created branch. Select the central idea and paste as many branch as you need for dates on your timeline;
        • Adjust the position of each pasted branch (end point) to become your future dates on the timeline ;




      3. Adjust layout
        • In order to get your timeline back on top of all the other added branches you must remove it and add it again. Select the timeline and cut it. Select the central idea and paste the timeline; Adjust its location and colour to set it back to the initial shape and position;
        • Eventually move some of the control points on the different branches to make all of them completely disappear behind the timeline
      4. Add content
        • Fill-in your timeline with the different dates and events;
        • Expand each branch with sub-branches according to your needs.


      This last mind map is of course an example of what you can obtain quickly as a timeline. Do not forget that you must put much more creative elements in your drawing if you want the content to be assimilated.

      The mind map also benefits from a fantastic presentation mode. This time I recorded for you the 3D mode. Have a look how great is the step by step display of the content of your map, at your speed. The perfect support for a great effect on the audience. Enjoy!


      For those who are interested by the iMindMap file, it is uploaded on the Biggerplate platform and accessible on http://www.biggerplate.com/mindmaps/kAK5GD25/philippe-packu-world-cup-history-or-how-to-build-a-timeline-with-imindmap-5

      7 comments:

      1. Philippe

        Amazing. I am in awe.

        You push iMindMap beyond the boundaries one can imagine.

        Well done

        Chris Griffiths

        ReplyDelete
      2. Absolutely brilliant! And what an inspiring site! I can't imagine what you will come up with next, but I'm looking forward to finding out. Keep it up!

        ReplyDelete
      3. Timelines are NEVER going to be the same, you are changing the World one Mindmap at a time! :)

        ReplyDelete
      4. Thank you for the tutoriel.

        Realy good to give your techniques to create mind map.
        I will fellow you on the english part of you web site.

        ReplyDelete
        Replies
        1. That's my philosophy. I can give great things, I can give beautiful things, I can give useful things, the most important is that you have some direction to do it yourself. Enjoy and happy to have a new fellower.

          Phil

          Delete
      5. Nice. The flag and border for South Korea is wrong in the world cup timeline. It looks like North Korea.

        ReplyDelete